FBOs See Change in the Business

Wisconsin’s largest full-service fixed base operation, Wisconsin Aviation, recently celebrated its 30th anniversary. Company founder and president Jeff Baum relates that there were far more FBOs that offered a wide variety of services 25 years ago...

With regard to co-marketing with fuel vendors, “There is much less of that now than there was,” says Baum. “It used to be that there was more support from fuel companies than I think you get today.”

Remarks Mason, “The economic dips help us and during spikes the phones are ringing off the hook with people trying to reduce their costs; I probably talk to my customers now more than I ever have.”

Looking ahead, Baum thinks there will be fewer FBOs and more chains or mini-chains. “As far as our business model, I think it will have to continue to evolve,” he adds. “Certainly the Internet and the ability to conduct virtual meetings is going to start eroding some of the trips we’ve seen.

“People still want to fly and the airlines continue to be our best friend by offering terrible service; I think that’s going to continue.”

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